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The impacts of violence against women

2 minutes

Violence against women has a serious and long-term impact on women’s health and wellbeing, on families and communities, and on society as a wholeThe range of impacts on Australia women, families and communities are discussed below. 

Homelessness

  • Domestic or family violence against women is the single largest driver of women’s homelessness. In 2017-2018, over 70 thousand women sought homelessness services due to domestic and family violence.

Health

  • For women aged 18-44, violence against women contributes more to women’s ill health than well-known risk factors like tobacco use, high cholesterol or use of illicit drugs. 
  • It has serious impacts on women’s health, including injuries and homicide, poor mental health, reproductive health problems and problems with alcohol and drug use. 
  • In 2016 -2017, on average 12 women a day were hospitalised for assault injuries due to domestic and family violence. 

Children and young people

  • Exposure to violence against their mothers or other caregivers causes profound harm to children, with potential impacts on attitudes to relationships and violence, as well as behavioural, cognitive and emotional functioning, social development, education and later employment prospects. 
  • Women who, as children, witnessed partner violence against their parent are more than twice as likely to be subjected to partner violence themselves, compared to women who had not. 

The economy

  • The combined health, administration and social welfare costs of violence against women have been estimated to be $21.7 billion a year. 
  • It is expected that if no further action is taken to prevent violence against women, costs will reach $323.4 billion by 2044-45. 
Stylised illustration of a woman and a child at a playground.

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